Dependency and divorce/separation in the Foreign Service: experiences, consequences, and recommendations

Divorce is uniquely challenging for foreign service partners and spouses. The EUFASA Research Department conducted an interview study with ex-spouses and -partners and looked into the supports provided by European MFAs and family associations. The study highlights how partners’ and spouses’ limited work opportunities and legal status and the resulting dependence on the foreign service officer make it difficult to afford legal counsel, get a fair settlement, find help in cases of abuse, gain custody of minor children when abroad, and to support themselves after divorce/separation. Maintaining a financial safety net proves elusive, even for highly educated spouses. The report includes an extensive catalogue of supports that can be offered by MFAs and family associations. Read the study here.

Read the study article here.